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Utica Drives Ohio Oil, NatGas Production to New Records

Ohio's horizontal Utica and Marcellus shale wells continued to set records in the fourth quarter, when operators reported producing 303 Bcf of natural gas and more than 6.2 million bbl of oil, according to data released Wednesday by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR).

Gas production was up by 25% from 3Q2015, while oil production rose 10% over the same period (see Shale DailyDec. 3, 2015). For the year, shale drillers nearly reached 1 Tcf of gas production at 953.9 Bcf. ODNR’s RIck Simmers, chief of the Division of Oil and Gas Resources Management, told an industry conference in Pittsburgh earlier this year that the state expected operators to exceed 1 Tcf in 2015 (see Shale DailyJan. 27).

Fourth quarter production still increased significantly from the same period in 2014, when ODNR reported 3.5 million bbl of oil and 164.8 Bcf of gas (see Shale DailyFeb. 26, 2015). Ohio law does not require the separate reporting of natural gas liquids; those totals are included in oil volumes.

The state said 1,230 horizontal wells reported production in the fourth quarter. Another 35 wells listed showed no production. The average amount of oil produced by each well during the quarter was 5,081 bbl, while the average amount of gas was 245.9 MMcf.

At the end of last week, ODNR records showed that 2,140 Utica wells had been permitted to date and 1,613 had been drilled. Forty-four Marcellus wells were permitted and 29 had been drilled. 

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